Pregnancy power foods stuff lots of nutrients into just a few bites. This makes them especially effective when you are too sick to eat very much, or you are gaining weight too fast or not quickly enough. Try these salads packed with power foods.
Eating properly is one of the most important things you can do during pregnancy. It ensures that you stay healthy and that your baby develops normally.
Pregnancy Power Foods
Pregnancy Power Foods #1 – Lean Meat: The amino acids in protein are the building blocks of every cell in your body and your baby’s body. Lean meat is an excellent option since it is also high in iron, critical in helping your baby develop his red blood cell supply and support yours, too. Add some beef, pork or lamb to vegetable soups, salads or noodle dishes.
Check out these protein-rich foods. For vegetarian options that are rich in iron try tofu, dried fruit, dark leafy greens, cooked dried beans, lentils, and quinoa.
Pregnancy Power Foods #2 – Yogurt: Supplies calcium for your baby’s growing bones, and to help keep yours strong. Aim for about 1,000 to 1,200 mg every day. Add fruit to yogurt, blend for smoothies, layer with granola in a parfait, or use in place of mayonnaise and sour cream in sandwich fillings, dips and salad dressings. To boost absorption, look for products that are also fortified with vitamin D. If you do not get sufficient amount of calcium during pregnancy, you are at a risk of developing osteoporosis.
Pregnancy Power Foods #3 – Wild Salmon: Cold-water fish like salmon is packed with omega-3 essential fatty acids that are critical for your baby’s eye and brain development. Pregnant women are encouraged to eat 8 to 12 ounces or two to three servings of fish every week. For additional foods with omega-3, click here. You can also get your omega-3 by eating tofu, walnuts, and enriched eggs.
Pregnancy Power Foods #4 – Nuts: Packed with essential minerals including copper, selenium, manganese, zinc, potassium, calcium, vitamin E, and magnesium. Nuts are versatile and portable. Toss them into salads, pasta, and baked goods or eat them as a nutritious snack throughout your day.
Pregnancy Power Foods #5 – Oatmeal: Oats are high in fiber, B vitamins, zinc, magnesium, and iron. Along with other complex carbs, they are also packed with fiber that can be helpful if you are dealing with constipation. While slow cooking steel cut oats will provide the highest amount of fiber, instant oatmeal is an option too. Top with fruit and nuts. Try the overnight oatmeal recipe.
Pregnancy Power Foods #6 – Edamame: These cooked soybeans are packed with calcium, folate, and protein. Eat them as a snack, or add them to soups, pasta, casseroles, and stir-fry. These delicious green pods are typically available lightly salted and frozen. Just thaw them out and pop the beans out of the pods to enjoy.
Pregnancy Power Foods #7 – Avocados: Are a delicious way to get your vitamins C and B6. They are also filled with folate and potassium. This vitamin combination helps baby’s tissue and brain growth as well as eases your morning sickness. One avocado provides nearly a third of the required daily intake of folate.
Pregnancy Power Foods #8 – Lentils: Are packed with Folate, which is one of the most important nutrients for pregnant women. Folate is essential as your baby’s brain and nervous system are forming. It also provides powerful protection against birth disorders such as spina bifida.
Pregnancy Power Foods #9 – Spinach: Is also rich in folate, along with iron, vitamin A, and calcium. It comes completely ready-to-eat in prewashed bags. Eat it raw, in a salad, as a wilted bed for fish or chicken, or layered in lasagna.
Remember that you are eating for two, and your baby is dependent on you to meet all of their dietary and nutritional needs. With a little planning and preparation, you can incorporate a whole list of pregnancy power foods into your diet.